Having met, worked and socialised with a myriad of Maritime University and Academy staff around the world, many courtesy of my privileged membership of IMLA , it has struck me how the approach to MET varies throughout these many institutions. There appear to be a series of very distinct regimes across the world. Many flag states choose to train their officer trainees under degree programmes whilst others choose a less academic process. Whether on a degree programme or not, there are also many regimes whom choose a militaristic approach to the training of officers. This militaristic approach is not limited to domestic discipline enforcement; it stretches into the classroom. One might question the function of a military style instructional teaching programme, where the entire premise of producing a watch keeping officer, is to encourage independent problem solving skills. The problem is that instructional teaching methods do little to instil the required capabilities into a trainee. In the early stages of their training new entrants often have their personality crushed in order for it to be re-built under an enforced discipline regime. They are deliberately overloaded with work, both physical and study, on the premise that life on board a merchant ship will be similarly challenging. This is not necessarily the case. The argument offered by this paper is based on the contention that a militaristic approach to training breeds ?followers? not ?leaders?. Trainees learn how to follow ?orders?. One concern is that even as a senior officer they will expect Captains to be the only decision maker on board. During a period when the global shipping industry is suffering from an alarming lack of recruits, this is especially concerning.
|Title of host publication||International Maritime Lecturers Association 19th Conference, 28th September to 1st October 2011, Opatjia, Croatia|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Sept 2011|